Washington Redskins quarterback Mark Rypien has a sprained tendon in the middle finger of his throwing hand, trainer Bubba Tyer said yesterday.
But even though the finger, which he injured against the New York Giants two weeks ago, is sore and swollen, Rypien said he was able to throw without problems in practice. He wore an adhesive bandage on the tip of the finger.
"I think we're going to be OK," coach Joe Gibbs said after the team ended a three-day layoff with a practice session.
The team will practice again today before taking off tomorrow and Monday. The Redskins will resume practice Tuesday for their opening playoff game, a week from today at RFK Stadium.
After Rypien injured the finger when he hit defensive end Leonard Marshall's hand, the Redskins said he had torn only a fingernail. But Tyer said yesterday that Rypien has a sprained extendor tendon in the joint at the end of the finger, which causes the tip of the finger to droop.
Rypien was removed from the game midway in the third quarter against the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday because Gibbs didn't want to risk further injury.
Offensive tackle Joe Jacoby suffered a hyper-extended knee during yesterday's practice, but said it didn't cause him problems.
* CHARGERS: Georgia Tech coach Bobby Ross, apparently the leading candidate for the San Diego head-coaching job, said he hopes to make a decision soon.
"We spoke a little bit more today," Ross, who had talked Thursday with Chargers general manager Bobby Beathard, said yesterday. "I'm hopeful of bringing it to a head within the next two or three, maybe four days."
Beathard said Thursday that Ross was the top choice to replace Dan Henning as the Chargers coach.
* COLTS: Rick Venturi will sit on the bubble for at least another month before the club decides whether he will stay on as coach. Meanwhile, the team will continue interviewing for the job.
Michigan State coach George Perles was the latest to meet with Jim Irsay, and the Colts general manager liked what he heard.
"I was very impressed with Perles," Irsay said after their meeting in Chicago Thursday. "He's a solid football guy, a solid candidate."
* PACKERS: General manager Ron Wolf's efforts to find a new coach turned up another candidate yesterday.
Mike Holmgren, offensive coordinator for the 49ers, confirmed that the Packers requested permission from his team to speak with him. Holmgren said 49ers president Carmen Policy told him the Los Angeles Rams and Colts also received permission.
Wolf fired coach Lindy Infante Sunday amid speculation that former Giants coach Bill Parcells was at the top of Green Bay's shopping list.
Then came reports that the Buccaneers approached Parcells with a coaching offer that included full control of personnel management, an option that Wolf said the Packers couldn't match.
Still, Wolf said Parcells has agreed to talk with him.
* BEARS: Quarterback Jim Harbaugh was in the hospital with what the club said was a "touch of the flu," but he still was expected to start tomorrow's playoff game with the Cowboys.
"He showed up at practice this morning with flu-like symptoms and the trainer sent him to the hospital as a precaution, just to see how he was doing," Bears spokesman Bryan Harlan said.
"He was suffering from dehydration, fever and a touch of the flu," Harlan said.